Readers’ Rides: Harrison’s ‘Mostly Garbage’ Centurion


Readers’ Rides: Harrison’s ‘Mostly Garbage’ Centurion

We love to see people re-using vintage bikes for modern exploits. It’s one of our absolute favorites. So when Harrison sent this into our Readers’ Rides inbox, we spent a good amount of time frothing over it. Let’s take a look!

I’m a big fan of the Readers’ Rides feature and humbly submit my own. The premise: use mostly garbage. Not parts-bin garbage (though there was some of that), but parts picked from garbage piles and dumpsters. It’s been my commuter for the past year and change.

The frame/fork/crank/BB/headset came from the no thanks/can’t use/save it/not-worth-it pile on the curb at our local (and truly excellent) Cola Town Bike Collective co-op, so serious garbage condition there.

Wheels and other small bits came from a customer’s DNR (for good reasons, including a bottom-pull front derailleur cable that was slowly sawing through the BB/chainstay cluster) Cannondale R300 from my local shop’s trash. The seat’s from their dumpster, too.

I pulled the USPS bin from my neighbor’s yard waste pile. It’d been there for a week, so I figured that if USPS wasn’t going to bother to pick it up then I might as well save the city the trouble of separating it from the compost, you know?

The front rack eyelets are the rear rack eyelets from some kind of chopped-up old Raleigh from yet another trash pile: cut ’em off the latter, welded them onto the fork and ground all of the rust off of everything and clear coated/waxed over all of the bare stuff left behind.

Oh, and the (reusable!) cable ferrules? Well, the last place I went before the COVID lockdown in 2020 was the much-loved annual Tiki Week at local fave Bourbon Columbia

The duck’s from the trash, too, obvs. Oh! and the basket is also the taillight.


Build Spec:

  • Frame and fork: Centurion Signet, unknown vintage (trashpile!)
  • Wheels: Mavic MA x Shimano Exage (dumpsterbike!)
  • Tires: Panaracer Gravel King SK, 700 x 32
  • Racks (F/R): Blackburn Bootlegger/EX-1 (uncut for max recyclability)
  • Bars-n-such: Surly Open Bar + Salsa Pepperjack grips + wine corks with Topo Chico bottle caps screwed into them.
  • Basket: Discarded USPS corrugated plastic mail tote (leafpile!)
  • Drivetrain: Sakae Ringyo x Surly
  • Stoppy Bits: Polygon brakes w/ Avis SD 2.0 BMX levers (the left’s backwards, ‘natch) and tiki cocktail stirrer ferrules.
  • Pedal: Shimano M324
  • Saddle: WTB SST (dumpster!)
  • Lights F/R: Vintage NiteRider + USPS magic (*cough* Specialized Flashback *cough*)



We’d like to thank all of you who submitted Readers Rides builds to be shared here at The Radavist. The response has been incredible and we have so many to share over the next few months. Feel free to submit your bike, listing details, components, and other information. You can also include a portrait of yourself with your bike and your Instagram account! Please, shoot landscape-orientation photos, not portrait. Thanks!